Paul Simon: New Collection; Final Tour Leg Begins

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Photo of Paul Simon via Legacy Recordings

Legendary songwriter and recording artist Paul Simon announced on July 12 the release of his 14th studio album – In The Blue Light – on Sept. 7. Produced by Simon and Roy Halee, who have worked together since the 1960s, the album features musicians who have joined Simon on fresh perspectives of 10 of his favorite (though perhaps less-familiar) songs, drawn from his large body of work.

The final leg of his Homeward Bound – The Farewell Tour began September 5. (See a clip from opening night below.)

Revisiting his repertoire, Simon has selected songs originally appearing on There Goes Rhymin’ Simon (1973), Still Crazy After All These Years (1975), One-Trick Pony (1980), Hearts and Bones (1983), The Rhythm of The Saints (1990), You’re The One (2000) and So Beautiful Or So What (2011), transforming the compositions through new arrangements and collaborations.

Pre-order the CD or vinyl.

Among the many musicians joining Simon on In The Blue Light are trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, guitarist Bill Frisell, and drummers Jack DeJohnette and Steve Gadd. Two of the compositions recorded with the New York-based chamber ensemble sextet yMusic, “Can’t Run But” and “Rene and Georgette Magritte with Their Dog After the War,” are being brought to the stage each night on Simon’s Homeward Bound – The Farewell Tour.

Listen to the new version of “Rene and Georgette Magritte…”

Listen to “Can’t Run But,” released on August 24

In The Blue Light Track Listing

One Man’s Ceiling Is Another Man’s Floor
Love
Can’t Run But
How The Heart Approaches What It Yearns
Pigs, Sheep and Wolves
René and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After the War
The Teacher
Darling Lorraine
Some Folks’ Lives Roll Easy
Questions For The Angels

A rarities collection is also expected.

Watch behind-the-scenes of the making of In The Blue Light

Simon explains in the album’s liner notes, “It’s an unusual occurrence for an artist to have the opportunity to revisit earlier works and re-think them; to modify, even completely change parts of the originals.

“Happily, this opportunity also gave me the gift of playing with an extraordinary group of musicians, most of whom I hadn’t recorded with before. I hope the listener will find these new versions of old songs refreshed, like a new coat of paint on the walls of an old family home.”

Listen to the new version of “One Man’s Ceiling Is Another Man’s Floor”

The release of In The Blue Light coincides with the final leg of the tour, which concludes with four performances in the New York City area and culminating with the final performance on Sept. 22 in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Watch Simon perform “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” in New Orleans on September 5

Paul Simon’s Homeward Bound – The Farewell Tour

U.S. – Final Leg

Sep 11 – Orlando, FL – Amway Center
Sep 12 – Atlanta, GA – Cellairis Amphitheatre
Sep 14 – Washington, DC – Capital One Arena
Sep 15 – Newark, NJ – Prudential Center
Sep 17 – Pittsburgh, PA – PPG Paints Arena
Sep 20 – New York, NY – Madison Square Garden
Sep 21 – New York, NY – Madison Square Garden
Sep 22 – New York, NY – Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Tickets are available here and here.

Simon’s body of work includes 14 studio albums, plus five studio albums as half of Simon & Garfunkel. He is the recipient of 16 Grammy Awards, three of which—Bridge Over Troubled Water, Still Crazy After All These Years, and Graceland—were Album of the Year honorees. In 2003, he received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in Simon & Garfunkel, and has sold more than 100 million records worldwide.

During his career, Simon has achieved 29 Top 40 singles in the U.S., with 14 of those reaching the Top 10, including such classic rock songs as “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” (which reached #1), “Kodachrome,” “Loves Me Like A Rock,” “Mother and Child Reunion,” “Late In The Evening” and “You Can Call Me Al.” With Simon & Garfunkel, he wrote and performed the #1 singles, “The Sound of Silence,” “Mrs. Robinson,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” among many others.

Related: Our Q&A with Robert Hilburn, author of Paul Simon: The Life

Paul Simon is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, both as a member of Simon & Garfunkel and as a solo artist. Simon was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2002.

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